Inspectors have rated as “outstanding” a Croydon Council-run service that helps adults with learning disabilities, mental health problems and other support needs.
The Croydon Shared Lives scheme, which places vulnerable adults in the homes of specialist carers for day-to-day support and help, was given the top rating of Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), a Government agency that regulates and inspects social services nationwide.
The programme, which is run by a council-based registered manager who oversees the carers, aims to give greater independence to vulnerable adults with highly complex needs.
Highlights of the CQC report included:
• The Croydon Shared Lives service provided an “exceptional model of personalised care”
• The service cared successfully for people with highly complex needs
• Carers worked closely with local health professionals to achieve their aims
• People valued and trusted their carers and felt well looked after
• The service’s experienced manager “provided outstanding leadership”
The service was rated as Outstanding overall, with individual ratings of Outstanding for being well-led and caring, and Good ratings for being safe, effective and responsive. December’s inspection involved visits to clients’ homes, speaking to their relatives, reviewing council records and policies and interviewing staff.
Deborah Ivanova, interim deputy chief executive of adult social care for the CQC, said: “We found that Croydon Shared Lives was providing an outstanding service to the people it supported, individuals were encouraged to be part of their community and the team there should be extremely proud of the work they do.
“We were struck by the extent to which the service places the people it supports at the heart of everything it does. While this should be standard practice across the sector, we do not see it often enough – and this, amongst other good practice found, is why this service deserves the outstanding rating which has been awarded. The manager and all of the staff deserve the credit for this Outstanding service.”
“Our Shared Lives staff and carers make a huge difference every day to vulnerable people in Croydon, so I’m incredibly proud that their work has been formally rated as outstanding.
“I’m particularly pleased this report underlines how the Shared Lives programme really helps individuals to be as independent as possible and achieve their personal goals, and that inspectors have held the service up as an example for others to follow.”
Councillor Louisa Woodley, cabinet member for families, health and social care
To see the full inspection report, visit the Care Quality Commission website.
If you are a Croydon resident and are interested in becoming a Shared Lives carer, visit the council’s website or call 020 8726 6000 ex 63516.